Listener Supported Public Media from Fordham University

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Ceol na nGael

Music, news and sports from Ireland, Sundays from Noon-4pm.

Ceol na nGaelThe most popular Irish radio program in New York, Ceol na nGael ("Music of the Irish") began as the brainchild of two Fordham students, Gerry Murphy and Mary Maguire, back in 1974. Over the years it has continued to be hosted by students, who have kept the tradition alive.

Tune in to 90.7 FM every Sunday between 12 noon and 4pm to hear all kinds of Irish music, often accompanied by dedications, and to stay connected through the community bulletin boards. Two of the program's highlights are the weekly news from Ireland, reported by Declan O'Byrne in Dublin at 2pm, and the sports from Ireland, with Brendan Tier, immediately following.

The current hosts of Ceol na nGael, Shannon Spillane and Megan Scully, exude enthusiasm about continuing the show's tradition of celebrating Irish music and culture.

Shannon has been immersed in Irish music and culture her entire life. Her grandparents are from Kerry and Cork, and she has been back to Ireland at least a dozen times. Shannon began Irish step-dancing when she was 5 years-old and has played Gaelic Football since she was 12. A Katonah, NY resident, she continues to play Gaelic football for two New York clubs and has twice traveled to Ireland to compete against Irish and other international teams. Shannon’s memories are filled with Sunday afternoon car rides traveling to a feis, soccer, or Gaelic football game, while listening to Ceol na nGael on WFUV with her parents and brothers. Shannon says, “I am very excited to be a Ceol na nGael co-host and truly honored to be part of a program that has kept the tradition of Irish music and culture alive for 40 years.”

Ceol na nGael has long been a part of Megan's life. Her grandparents relocated to the Bronx from Ireland and often listened to the program, which served as a comforting reminder of home. She has fond memories of listening to the show as a child with her family growing up in Monroe, NY. Her interest in Irish music and culture intensified after attending a family reunion in County Cork, Ireland, where she was thrilled to take part in quite a few impromptu family seisuins and ceilis. "I am so excited to be a part of the Ceol na nGael team!" said Megan. "I look forward to sharing my love of Irish music with listeners as well as learning more about Irish music and culture."

Many of the Ceol na nGael hosts over the years continue to work in the media, long after they've graduated. They include Marie Hickey, Anne Bowen, Gerry Lavin, Mary Snow, Jim Driscoll, and Eileen Byrne. The program was hosted in the mid-80's by Patti Anne Brown, an anchor at Fox News Channel, and by Kathleen Biggins, a CBS Radio producer who is also the host of A Thousand Welcomes, WFUV's popular Saturday morning program of traditional Irish music.

Maura Monahan and Maggie Dolan are the program's producers, working with the hosts on the music, booking interviews with figures in the Irish community, and developing new features. Their longtime commitment to the program can be attributed to their love of Irish culture and their knowledge of Ceol na nGael's merits.

Past CNG Hosts with Frank Patterson

Ceol na nGael Hosts (Present to Past):

  • Shannon Spillane
  • Megan Scully
  • Tara Cuzzi
  • Colleen Taylor
  • Kerri Gallagher
  • Kevin Quinn
  • Ashling Colton
  • Maura Monahan
  • Maggie Dolan
  • Liz Noonan
  • Deirdre McGuinness
  • Frank McCaughey
  • Meaghan O'Rourke
  • Jennifer Croke
  • Deirdre Hogan
  • Jean-Marie Woods
  • Marianna McGillicuddy
  • Eileen Fitzsimons
  • Eileen Byrne
  • Michelle Gillan
  • Mary Anne Grimes
  • Eileen Duffy
  • Mary Fogarty
  • Gerry Lavin
  • Mike Donahue
  • Patti Ann Browne
  • Kathleen Biggins
  • Peter Daly
  • Marie Hickey
  • Ann Bowen
  • Mary Maguire
  • Gerry Murphy
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Irish musicians understand just how special Ceol na nGael is. According to singer Cathie Ryan, "Ceol na nGael reconnects us to our roots and reinforces our values as a community. There are millions of us in the tri-state area, but Ceol na nGael, with its music, news reports, and community bulletin boards, makes us a small village."

For more information, email Ceol na nGael.

Our man in Dublin:

Ceol na nGael listeners enjoy hearing about goings-on in the homeland each week with newscaster Declan O'Byrne. A Dublin native, Declan taught English in Spain before beginning a career in journalism in 1980. A senior journalist at The Irish Independent, naturally he's a fan of soccer, rugby and the G.A.A.

Declan's glad that FUV provides news, and considers his position a privilege. "I hope my reports to WFUV help bridge the miles between the U.S. and home for both recent immigrants and those with links to Ireland through the generations." Hear Declan's reports every Sunday at 2pm on 90.7 FM. You can also e-mail him.

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